Saturday, May 16, 2009

5/16/09 Baby Steps

We are now three weeks out from chemo and radiation, and things are moving ever so slowly but there are a few promising signs. I went to see the speech pathologist at Clifton Springs and she helped me to swallow some water and some tea. She feels that for three weeks out things are actually going pretty well. I will meet with her again on Monday and they are going to do what’s called a barium swallow, where they actually take X-ray pictures of you swallowing to make sure that there are not any abnormalities. If everything checks out OK she’ll put a plan together to have me start on a liquid diet and hopefully work our way to more solids in time. In the meantime time I have been trying to have a cup of cool herbal tea each day and one day I even had a half a cup of egg drop soup! It still hurts to swallow and feels extremely foreign but I’m working hard to make it happen. I also have been doing 3 to 4 tube feedings a day to try to maintain my current weight until I can once again eat to put weight back on. The mucus is still an enormous issue and has not gotten any better yet, but I know in time it will. Peggy and I did an elementary school assembly close to home in Volney NY. yesterday. I really cannot sing but it was wonderful to play and be in the groove. I had to clear stuff out of my throat between each song, but it was doable. It was really exhausting but felt good to be out doing some work. It made me feel hopeful for performing in the future! In general my energy level is beginning to come up a little bit, and every once in a while I actually get a hint of normality, and I hope those will become more frequent as we move along thru Spring and Summer.

I really want to thank everyone who helped out to make the benefit for Peggy and I, held at Blueseed studio last night. We were not able to attend but from what I understand it was sold out and was a really wonderful time. Many thanks to Carol, Dan, Roy, Jamie, Lisa, Klaus, Fran and all the volunteers and concert goers who made the event such a success !! A big Thank you to all of you, we are forever grateful.

Spring is truly in the air, the days are longer, the birds are singing, the lilacs are all in bloom and the grass is growing faster than we can keep up with. Spring of coarse is the season of hope, and with these lovely spring days I remain hopeful with each passing day. We are as always so grateful to all of you for your continued support and encouragement as we continue with this healing process. Thanks to all of you for all you do and I so look forward to seeing you at 7:00.


  1. We were just listening to "Hold on to Hope" on our JamCrackers CD this afternoon, and it always makes me think of you.

    I remember when I first started noticing those hints of normality after treatment. They are important to notice, because they will eventually become more and more frequent and start stringing together into hours and days, and you don't want to miss a second of it!

    I'm glad to hear that you have started taking fluids, and I look forward to hearing about the new foods you are able to consume as time passes.

    Thinking of you always.


  2. Good Morning,Dan and Peggy!
    Danielle, Thomas, and I send you our love and huge wishes for a full recovery.
    After having had the pleasure of meeting you those Mountain Music Weekends up @ Sagamore for 3 years, we want you to know that we think of you as two of the most wonderful people we have ever met. You are a true inspiration for all of us.
    Even as my kids move on in life to college and new things, you are one of their most wonderful memories. Danielle took your CDs with her... and looks forward to playing songs from your piano book when she comes home. Thomas misses those weekends and actually wanted to take his first Columbus Day Weekend of college off to go up last year but I (being the practical mom) thought he shouldn't miss school. He found those weekends a wonderful retreat from the craziness of "Back to School", and he still tells his friends about "Nuns in Disguise"!
    Take it slow, my friends. Take pleasure in every wonder that nature gives us and take time to heal knowing that you are loved by many.

  3. HI Dan and Peg:

    Glad to hear there continues to be improvement, week by week. I hope things never get quite back to normal.....we like that you were always a little abnormal. :-) Keep hanging in there!

    Best wishes,
    Eric and Joan

  4. Dear Dan and Peggy,
    How delightful and wonderful that you were presenting at a school! We send our love and prayers everyday!

    Sue, Kevin and Julie

  5. Hi Dan and Peggy - Wow! You did a performance at a school together. That's such great news! Your determination and courage is amazing.

    We are overwhelmed by your courage and have so much respect for your strength and willingness to share this journey with all of us. You fill us with great joy in your small steps of success. God Bless you both and keep your spirit strong.

    Our love and prayers -

    Bob and Karen McCurdy

  6. Dan,

    Hints of normality??? Since when were you ever normal? (Just joking, ha ha) So glad to hear that you are moving (step by step) along in the healing process. Amazing that you performed. You are something else! Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

  7. So glad to hear spirit and body were up to performing with Peggy. Those lucky kids! The frost last night from which I covered the vulnerable vegetable seedlings is a good example of how spring has many faces, each one requiring a different response. This is your spring 2009 - slow in arriving but with many signs of new life if you really notice. May your patience be rewarded with a summer of healing.

  8. deborah forest hartMay 19, 2009 at 4:34 PM

    Spring of coarse is the season of hope, and "with these lovely spring days I remain hopeful with each passing day."

    That certainly was an apt characterization of your rather rough spring. Here's hoping that the rest of your spring course will be running rather smoother. Slicker even, than a pair of Mooselips. . . hehe. . . :-)
    Hugs, Deborah & Andy

  9. I am so glad to read how well the treatments are going and how well you are feeling of late. happy happy june. You have been in our family thoughts and prayers over these last few months. In gratitude, until we see you again- Susan